August 12, 2022

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The corporate that transports college students for Stillwater Space Public Faculties has requested a decide to assist it get better $860,000 in penalties and to stop the college district from terminating its contract.

Stillwater Space Public Faculties sued the Fridley-based Metropolitan Transportation Community at first of the college 12 months, alleging it failed to supply agreed-upon bus providers. A driver scarcity meant some buses within the district had been operating as much as an hour late.

Since then, the district has withheld $860,000 in penalties for route adjustments, MTN stated in a movement to the courtroom. And on Monday, the district knowledgeable MTN it intends to cancel their contract in June, two years earlier than it expires, MTN stated.

“At this juncture, MTN has no different possibility however to hunt courtroom intervention due to the (district’s) continued failure to abide by the phrases of the contract,” stated MTN’s legal professional Damon Ward.

MTN says the route change penalties are unlawful and that the district on Friday improperly issued a request for proposals for a brand new transportation supplier.

Stillwater Superintendent Malinda Lansfeldt stated Monday she couldn’t touch upon lively litigation. Nonetheless, she stated the short-term restraining order issued Sept. 3 “enjoins MTN from violating the contract with the college district. It doesn’t preclude the district from going out for a request for proposal.”

COUNTERSUIT

After the college district sued in September, MTN filed a countersuit in opposition to the college district, alleging breach of contract and racial discrimination. The corporate stated the district breached its obligations beneath the contract “by trying to power obligations on to MTN not required” beneath the contract.

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Now, the corporate is searching for a short lived restraining order and injunctive reduction in opposition to the district, alleging that the district has didn’t make correct funds for months at a time.

In a letter to high school board members Monday, MTN president and CEO Tashitaa Tuffaa wrote that his firm’s most up-to-date bill “was paid at solely two-thirds of the quantity.”

“After being solely partially paid for months, MTN can not full this college 12 months’s contract if this continues,” Tuffaa wrote. “I wish to serve this district, however my enterprise can not survive being paid considerably lower than the prices of servicing the routes. I’m humbly and respectfully asking in your assist to get somebody within the district to work with me and my firm in good religion.”

Within the movement filed Monday, MTN requested that the courtroom order the district to cancel its seek for a brand new bus firm, to cease penalizing MTN for “servicing routes within the method directed by plaintiff that this courtroom directed MTN to supply,” and to maintain the contract in place for the total time period.

Tuffaa stated his drivers have been taxed for the reason that starting of the college 12 months.

The drivers, he instructed the college board, have been “working routes which can be two and typically even thrice longer than typical routes. These routes had been designed by (the district’s transportation marketing consultant) CESO, with no enter from or consideration for the folks staffing the routes.”

A courtroom listening to on the matter is ready for April 1.

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MTN, which has 307 workers and 420 buses, providers college districts all through the metro space, together with Minneapolis, Mounds View, White Bear Lake, St. Anthony-New Brighton, Edina, Richfield and Osseo, Tuffaa stated.